The death of the thousands of fish that washed up during the weekend in a salt lake near Galateia in the north was not due to polluted waters but low oxygen levels, ‘authorities’ said on Tuesday.
According to reports in the Turkish Cypriot press on Monday, thousands of fish, particularly mullet, washed up on a beach near occupied Vokolidha and more were found floating at the edges of a small salt lake near Galateia in the same area.
Reports said the lake’s water had turned reddish and suggested it was because it was polluted but ‘local authorities’ denied this though conceding that tests had not been done on it yet.
According to daily Kibris, the livestock and fisheries ‘department’ announced that the death of the fish was due to low oxygen levels in the lake. Crews collected around 2,000 dead fish from the lake, including mullet and shrimps.
The ‘mayor’ of Vokolidha, Cemil Sarıcizmeli, criticised media reports saying the death of the fish was due to pollution.
An official of the environment department in the north told the daily that this phenomenon does not only occur in the lake in question but in all lakes whose water is not replenished with fresh sea water. He added that as soon as the local ‘municipality’ noticed the dead fish, it started transferring fresh sea water to the lake. If they hadn’t done that, he said, 90 per cent of the fish in the lake would die.
He said that the result of analyses on the fish and the water would be announced following the completion of lab tests.